Wardrobe 101

Style Staples #4: A Great Jacket

Happy day, dear reader!

Welcome back! Or welcome, if this is your first visit! Now that fall’s capsule wardrobe is sorted, it’s time to get back to the Style Staples series that I started and diverted. I’m working on getting better about my shiny-sparkly-squirrel problem! There are so many posts jiggeting about in my brain, that I sometimes derail. Anyone else out there have that issue? (I’m betting the answer is yes.)

Jumping back to the subject at hand. Style Staples. If the term is new to you, Style Staples are those pieces that help you turn the Building Basics in your closet into a look with intention. They add personality to the ordinary pieces found in most closets. When I work with a client, we identify the client’s style recipe and start digging in the closet for all the Building Basics we can find. Then we hunt for Style Staples to make those Basics into outfits that have personality. The client’s personality! You can find the previous Style Staples posts here.

Style Staple #4 is one of my personal favorites! A Great Jacket can completely transform a look. When I say a Great Jacket, that could be anything from a tailored blazer, to a trench coat, a leather jacket, or a denim jacket. Great means it needs to fit you beautifully and be a personality piece for you. That doesn’t mean it needs to be flashy. But it should really reflect a part of your personality. It should also flatter your coloring! As an example, my jean jacket is a Style Staple for me. I love my denim jacket. I even wrote it a poem. Yes, that’s crazy, but throwing on a jean jacket can make the difference between work and play. Here’s what I mean…

Same dress, two very different looks. The long white jacket gives the dress a professional look, presentation worthy, whether buttoned or not. The jean jacket makes it everyday. Flat sandals would have taken this dress and jean jacket even further down the casual road!

There’s no reason to save a jacket for dresses and skirts. A blazer or suit-style jacket is an easy way to add polish to jeans and a top. Here we have white jeans and a tee. Nice, but nothing that says business, especially with the sandals!

But look what happens when I put on my navy suit jacket… Business casual! (You can even forgive the sandals.)

In 5 Ways to Style a White Tee and Jeans, two casual jackets made an appearance. If the weather had been cooler, I would have included more! Two belted casual jackets, with two very different feels…

Safari versus Spy?

Imagine the same jeans and tee with a leather jacket. That would be a completely different vibe! But sometimes it’s not even necessary to change the jacket…

Something as simple as rolling or pushing up the sleeves can make a difference. Look at how cuffing the shirt sleeves outside the jacket makes it more casual.

Now that fall is on its way (at least here in the northern hemisphere) it’s the perfect time to experiment with your Great Jacket, Style Staple #4!

If you want to rock one of this year’s huge fall/winter trend, pile on multiple jackets and coats. Mega-layering was everywhere on the runways, and if it doesn’t make you feel like the Michelin Man, try it on for size! I’ll be layering my jean jacket under my winter coat if our weather gets cold enough this year, but I’m not holding my breath… A vest (or gillet) is another great layering option with a jacket if you live in warmer climes and still want a more layered look.

If you’re still not convinced, a jacket is an easy third piece that finishes an outfit. It can help create a flattering column of color to lengthen and slenderize your silhouette. It doesn’t have to be heavy or structured. There are amazing knit and ponte jackets out there that feel like a sweater, but look more polished than your average cardie. If you are heading into spring and summer (Hi, southern hemisphere friends!), a jacket can take your shorts from shorts to suit, and create proportion magic. A jacket is a great way to cover those upper arms if you are sensitive about them… Not all jackets have long sleeves! You can find them in bracelet length, 3/4, and elbow length. (Or you can have them shortened to suit.) If collars bother you (They do me!) then look for collarless jackets, like the navy one here.

How about you? Do you wear a jacket to change your look? Or is a jacket only an outerwear piece for you? Does this season feel like it’s time to try something new? Maybe something out of your normal sartorial box? Trying new things is good for us, and stretches our style muscles! Let me know what you are thinking about for jackets this coming season in the comments below… I do so love hearing from you!

Stylishly yours,

Thank you (as always!) to Shelbee of Shelbee on the Edge for hosting her Link-Up! What would the weekend be without you?


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